Blankenhorn agreed that same-sex marriage would provide a large number of benefits including more committed relationship, less promiscuity, higher living standards, reduced burden on the state, less prejudice and hate crimes, more scholarship and discussion on the value of marriage, an expansion of the American idea, and less heterosexual marital unhappiness due to gay people heterosexually marrying.
He even agreed that civil unions and domestic partnerships harmfully blur the distinctions of marriage.
But he believes that same-sex marriage will harm the institution of marriage. Boies asked him to indicate in his list of references which scholars make this claim, he included Alan Carlson from the Howard Center (an ultra-conservative think tank) and Maggie Gallagher. (It’s amazing how circular the anti-gay argument is. They all rely on each other for validation of their opinion with little to no actual research.)
Boies had Blankenhorn list his three “rules of the game” (essential structures of marriage): 1) rule of opposites, man and woman; 2) set of two; 3) sexual relationship.
When asked if there were exceptions to rule one prior to 50 years ago, he listed a tribe in Africa with possible man-boy temporary marriages as part of a warrior caste.
When asked about rule two, he admitted that previously to 100 years ago, 83% of societies were polygamous. But Blankenhorn doesn’t think that polygamy violates the rule of two because it is a bunch of separate one-man-one-woman marriages. (This is, I believe, a distinction without a difference. It is the fallback position for those who try and imply that marriage has always been the 1950s nuclear family in the face of incredulous historians.)
In referencing Blankenhorn’s third rule, Boies noted that the Supreme Court had already determined that incarcerated persons may marry without the presumption that they would ever have sex.
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This trial bodes well for helping educate people about the normality of our relationships.